Sunday, September 28, 2008


Oh Toronto. Whenever I feel like breaking up with you and going back to my old lover, the east coast, you always do whimsical little things to show me how much fun we could have together. Don't get me wrong. The east coast will probably be my reliable spouse, holding my hair back when I puke or reminding me to invest in an RRSP or handing me a glass of water to go with the multivitamin. But for the time being, Toronto, you, city of arrogance and finance and exuberance, you show up at my door at 2 a.m. with a bottle of whiskey and a game of Scrabble or egg me on to have that late night snack in Chinatown or race me to run a red light on my bicycle. You sure are damn fun despite my reservations. I can't help but enjoy all your badass goodness. And for the time being, you'll have to do, with your mischievous ways and dashing wayward smile.


I started thinking about what I enjoy about Toronto, and like the most recent issue of Spacing (The People Issue) I realized what I love and hate most about the city is the people. I hate the throngs of commuters and drivers who negligently swing open their doors and step out onto the road. I hate the pushing and shoving on the subway, the squeezing into a train. I hate the lineups at the grocery stores and the glares you get from people when you are coming from opposite ends but seem to move in the same direction despite attempts to avoid collision. I hate the meandering pace of some folks on the already crowded, vendor-filled spaces on Spadina.

But what I also love are the many projects people are currently working on (music, arts or urban planning related). I love the different languages you hear on the streets, like I'm turning the dial on a radio. I love the multitude of cuisines you can find in the city. Guyanese anyone? And I sometimes love the weaving in between people on Spadina.

I guess part of what makes Toronto manageable is when you meet a great, warm and friendly person in the city. At times, it feels like such people are few and far between, but when you do, you're reminded that such folks are what makes the city real, not just a pulsing mass of bodies. Toronto has provided an endless source of amusement for me. Sometimes the crazies are so outrageous, all I can do is laugh and file away the interaction for later when an entertaining story needs to be told.

1 comment:

JTL said...

Toronto can be a fickle mistress, for sure. It can be both maddening and magnificent, sometimes within two minutes of each other.